GCC banks gaining strength to withstand pressures
Manama, September 19, 2013
The GCC banking system has strengthened over the past couple of years, putting them in a better position to withstand external financial pressures, it was noted at a key meeting.
This was announced during the 58th meeting of governors of central banks and monetary agencies in the GCC, said a report in the Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication.
The meeting was held yesterday at the Ritz-Carlton Bahrain Hotel and Spa.
Central Bank of Bahrain Governor Rasheed Al Maraj who delivered the opening address at the meeting said the region has achieved good growth rates in the recent months following increased demand for banking services.
"There is no doubt that regulatory regimes in the GCC have contributed to creating a suitable environment for growth.
"Moving ahead, we will continue to look at cohesive modernisation of banking supervision regulations and legislation, commensurate with the risks that govern the business of banks," he said.
It was also announced that efforts towards a unified regional payment mechanism as well as measures to address anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism in the GCC region have been progressing well.
Al Maraj said Bahrain has no plans to borrow loans unless the kingdom runs into budget deficit next year, the report quoted our sister paper Akhbar Al Khaleej as saying.
"The country is, for the time being, capable of managing its financial affairs within the current year's budget," he said on the sidelines of the meeting.
The banking sector is expected to post sound growth rates of five per cent to 8 per cent, compared to last year, he said. - TradeArabia News Service